22 Jun, 2018
10 : 00
In recognition of the five years of learning in Primary School, and to wish our students well as they transition to the Years 6-8 Learning Community, Yew Chung International School of Beijing hosted a graduation ceremony for the outgoing Year 5 students earlier in June.
This ceremony was a great celebration of all that they have learned and accomplished, and all that they will learn and accomplish in the next chapter. Speeches were given by Co-Principals Ms Christine Xu and Mr Noel Thomas, three student representatives from Year 5, and Year 6 students who offered advice and encouragement on moving into Y6-8 Learning Community.
Mr Thomas opened by casting his mind back to a childhood hike up St Mary’s Peak in southern Australia with his father. Rather than one steep climb, there were peaks and there were troughs. It was an arduous day, but one that paid off with the great reward of a spectacular view and sense of achievement. Much like this hike, Mr Thomas mused, life too is filled with demanding climbs that require great stamina. However, as we grow and stretch ourselves throughout school, university and into adulthood, we continue to reach new metaphorical heights that are met with great rewards.
After the presentation of certificates, Ms Xu offered her advice to the graduating Year 5 students. Filled with wisdom on what it means to grow up, and the challenges that make up life’s rich tapestry, it makes a fitting piece to share with the wider community:
Growing up is the ability to put freedom to good use, and you will soon find that this freedom is more challenging than restrictions that have come before. As you grow up, you will have to learn to make good choices, and use your freedom wisely.
Growing up requires the setting of goals; both specific, measurable goals and those that are ambitious and stretching. In the face of numerous subjects you will need to keep focus on, ensuring that your goals are concrete and can be turned into action. Go step by step to close the distance on your greatest ambitions. You will, in time, find yourself within reaching distance.
Growing up requires communication. There will come a time when you choose not to consult your teachers and family because you feel able to make decisions on your own. But please always remember that your teachers, family and friends, who have supported you all this time, will continue to support you forever. Turn to them when you are facing setbacks and challenges. Never give up. Never escape.
Growing up entails change. As you move into Secondary, you will be met with new Learning Communities and you will find that you are challenged in new ways. Respond with a positive attitude, and be prepared to make changes to yourself and your habits. Do not resist change, for change and growing up have always gone hand-in-hand.